Greenville Business Magazine December 2009 : Page 23

BY JERRY HOWARD } A Success } With more than a dozen announce- ments through October 2009 generating over 750 new jobs and nearly $170 million in capital investment, Greenville County enjoyed another good year in attracting new and growing existing busi- nesses — despite challenging economic circumstances nationally. Since its founding in mid-2001, the Greenville Area Development Corpora- tion has helped over 150 businesses expand operations or relocate to Green- ville County. Generating over 9,700 jobs and in excess of $2 billion in capital investment, the county’s economic devel- opment efforts have resulted in more than $5 in taxes paid to Greenville County for every dollar invested in GADC initiatives. Now there’s a return on investment. These are not just new businesses coming to Greenville County. Although new corporate citizens are welcomed and highly sought after, nearly half of 2009’s announcements to date are expansions by existing businesses, close to the histori- cal average where nearly 65 percent of Greenville’s economic growth comes from existing companies. Fueling this growth are many factors, including access to a diverse and deep range of programs available to busi- nesses seeking to expand here. Most of these tools and incentives are available to qualifying businesses of all types and sizes. The GADC continues to support PHOTOGRAPH BY COMMERCIAL IMAGING Bright for County Economic Development numerous small R&D companies, service organizations, specialty manufacturers and entrepreneurs in maximizing access to beneficial incentives including: • Property tax abatements • Corporate income tax reductions • Training & infrastructure grants • Energy grants And while the nation’s economic downturn hindered, it never stymied GADC efforts as 13 projects came to frui- tion through October 2009 -- bringing vital economic diversification, quality jobs, good salaries and significant investment to Greenville County. Research-driven enterprises like Kemet and FitesaFiberweb and global brands like Samsung Networks America and GE Aviation demonstrate that Greenville is competitive with any other domestic or international location. Fundamental economic development principals placed in service in 2001 have spearheaded Greenville’s success. The Greenville Area Development Corpora- tion has built and retained a team that is a model for economic development organi- zations nationwide. Diverse, talented and innovative, your GADC team leverages economic development systems, processes, tools and insight to great advantage for Greenville. Marshalling the talents and investment of both public and a record 125 private sector investors this year, your GADC delivers cost-effective, coordinated and results-driven efforts to attract and retain top companies, jobs and investment here in our community. And momentum builds as we enter 2010. Despite the downturn, GADC staff continues to meet with a record number of prospects interested in considering relocation or expansion in Greenville County – a stream of leads attributable to several consecutive years of focused marketing, communications and outreach programs. Many of these companies are key players in our identified target segments of Advanced Materials, Automotive, Avia- tion/Aerospace, Headquarters, Research and Development and Life Sciences. This selective targeting not only focuses precious marketing resources, it also trans- lates into those target segment companies cumulatively offering an average hourly wage of $28.06 – nearly double historical South Carolina, Greenville County and national wage averages. 2010 will see sustained support in terms of funding, staff and results from the innovative Business Retention & Expansion Program which helped to spawn the 2009 launch of Greenville Works -- a collaborative of 12 public and private sector non-profits spanning education, workforce development, economic development and public DECEMBER 2009 | GREENVILLE BUSINESS MAGAZINE 23 2009 2010

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